The Dippy Cat

The Dippy Cat

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Alas, Poor Dippy

The Dippy Cat is an unapologetic have-not.

I fought this for the longest time.

"Here, have this deluxe yak fur ball, made specially for you by deluxe yaks in countries I cannot find on a globe," I would croon, waving what looked like a mummified hamster meaningfully in her direction.

She bit the orb of bison fluff and carried it away a few steps. An hour later I glanced over. She had fallen asleep holding it in her mouth like a ball gag. She was drooling.

No fuzzy ball. Check.

"Here Dippy, I have a nice box for you to play in. Niiiice cardboard..."

Now, most of you would believe that since she has, after great effort, mastered the art of sitting in the litter tray and making embarrassing eye contact, that she would at least comprehend that a box has an "in" side and an "out" side and that both were fine places to be.

Most of you would be wrong.

I put her in the (open top non-confining guaranteed fun for cats) box.

For a few moments our lives became an existential Dr. Seuss book, or possibly a play about Hemingway, written by Woody Allen.

"I came to the box. The box was there.
I will not sit inside the box.
I will not sit there with a fox.
I will scream and hide my head.
I will fall over like I'm dead."

I lifted up one paw and let it drop. It fluttered weakly to her side. I removed myself to a safe distance.

A bit later her furred periscope of a head, ears flattered, appeared over the rim. She flopped sideways, hard, causing the box to stand up on its short side like a sudden cardboard erection.

And then she rolled out. For a trembling second the box stood tall, and then it fell over on top of her.

For a few moments I watched silently as the cardboard square crawled across the living room yowling and meeping. When she began to eat through in an effort to seek freedom I picked it up.

She spat out a mouthful of cardboard and eyed me with distaste.

Never one to admit failure, I went to the store.

The bouncy ball disappeared.

The sock monkey toy tried to strangle her.

She drowned all of the catnip mice in Nike's water bowl and I had to take them away after he began drinking the resulting 'nip tea, wearing overalls and changing all the songs in my  favorites playlist to the Grateful Dead.

The "entertaining cat puzzle and ball ring" exploded.

Frenzied now, I tried again.

I got her the softest, comfiest, coziest, pinkest kitty sleeping mat which has ever existed.

She did not sleep on it. I did, however, manage to stop her before she finished burying it in the litter tray.

She is currently happily snoozing, on the bare wood of my work table. Nike, who can't believe his luck, is sprawled luxuriantly on a pile made of his own two fuzzy nap rugs and the pinkest kitty sleeping mat ever.

I've got the Grateful Dead on repeat.

Oh, I did finally find something she likes...

Monday, June 15, 2015

Zen and the Art of Dippy Cat

Waking up, for many people, is apparently a positive experience. There are twittering birds and the smell of fresh coffee fills the air.

These people do not live at my house.

Allow me to set the scene...

The hour is "Oh Dear God." I slowly drift from a rather pleasant dream where I am being menaced by a snarling wombat and realize that against all probability I am indeed awake at 4:30 am. I feel as if I am hungover- my mouth is full of fur and my head is buzzing.

Given that I do not drink, I ponder. WHY am I awake in such a state at 4:30 am? I attempt in a moment of zen calm to take stock of my situation.

I do not have to pee, much.

My feet do not itch.

Brian is asleep and not snoring.

My mouth is full of fur.

My mouth is really full of fur.

I cannot close my mouth because there is an entire cat face in it.

And the cat face is snoring.


I have possibly found my answer.

Crossing my eyes desperately, I look down. Nike Cat has stretched out under my blankets, and has decided for reasons known only to himself that my face hole is the perfect place to rest his chin.

I poke him and he opens his eyes.

We lay there. He does not break eye contact. It is awkward now.

I poke him again.

In the space of 30 seconds we try out several new sleeping positions: "cat tap dancing on Mommy's chest", "arm sloth", and "Jesus that's my groin" before mutually deciding on "Alien Face Hugger (TM)".

I attempt to take stock of the situation once again. My head is now pinned to the pillow. I have one cat hoof in each ear and he has begun slowly licking my left eyeball. He is purring. One rear foot is in my mouth, the other is invading my left nostril.

I sigh.

My pillow begins to growl.

Contorting myself instantly in ways never before known to humankind, I manage to rotate my head Exorcist fashion until I can get a look.

Never wanting to be left out, Dippy had apparently fallen asleep sitting upright, her back against the wall behind the bed and her back feet on the carpet. With a little stretching, this meant she could put her front legs on the bed under my pillow, and rest her chin on the mattress.

She looked like a malignant C-clamp.

And I had just woken her up.

There was a brief moment of existential uncertainty ("Why am I here? How will I die? Oh God why did I ever get a cat?") as Dippy attempted to marshal her limbs and teeth into an alien killing force.

As closely as I can remember the next few seconds went something like this:

  1. Dippy swats madly at Nike with both front feet, claws extended
  2. Dippy gets both front feet stuck to the mattress 
  3. Nike begins to swat Dippy on the top of her little head with the paw which had previously been in my left ear.
  4. Lacking crampons, Dippy attempts to pull herself free by sinking her fangs into the nearest object and pulling.
  5. The nearest object is the crown of my head
  6. Nike goes back to sleep
You may not belief this, but it is actually quite restful to lay in the morning gloom, one cat obstructing your breathing, another hanging by their fangs from your scalp.The growling is quite soothing, and the pendulum motion as the head weight tries to free herself lulls you into a meditational state.

I know this because the little creep fell asleep that way.